Pic from Flickr by paperbackwriter
The title of this sermon is Prayer Unleashed.
The text for this sermon comes from Joshua 10:6-14.
Most of us have a Southern culture church background. I want you to forget it. I want you to forget denominations, forget congregational voting, forget deacon led churches, I want you to forget traditional business meetings.
Go back to the Bible.
Go back and study the Book of Acts.
Jesus, in Acts 1:8, gives the command to share the gospel with the world.
“But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you, and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem and in all Judea and Samaria and to the end of the earth.”
Jesus told the disciples not to do anything until they received the Holy Spirit. So what did the disciples do?
We tend to use prayer as our last resort. We act like this because we do not truly believe that prayer accomplishes anything. We want our situation solved without praying. We need to go see what Oprah has to say, or Dr. Phil. We want to exhaust all avenues before turning to prayer. Why? Because your faith is weak.
Let’s face it. We pray some pretty dumb prayers.
- We pray for God to “be with us”
- We pray and give God an out, “if it is your will”
- We pray for God to give us opportunities to share the gospel when everywhere we go there are people.
When are we going to realize that prayer is not our last resort? It is our MISSILE LAUNCHER!
Joshua had made a mistake. He had made a deal with Gibeon that should have never been made. Gibeon was supposed to be destroyed but instead Joshua and his leaders made a covenant that they would not destroy Gibeon. Now there are a group of 5 kings who decided to form an army an attack Gibeon because they made a covenant with Joshua.
vs. 6 The 5 kings and their huge army set up camp at Gibeon and they are about to throw down and take out Gibeon. Because of the covenant, Gibeon goes to Joshua and begs for help.
vs. 7-8 Joshua takes his army and his best guys and gathers them together. God speaks to Joshua and tells him that He has no need to be afraid, the enemy will be destroyed because God has delivered them to the hands of Joshua.
vs. 9 Joshua and his army marched all night.
vs. 10-11 The battle begins. Israel starts to define what winning looks like. So much so, that the kings and their army start to flee from the fight. During the battle God rained down hailstones on the enemy.
vs. 12 Joshua prays for the sun to stand still.
This is prayer is bold, daring, audacious. This prayer also shows Joshua’s faith and confidence in God.
Bold prayers come from a place where you have seen God work before and you need God to give you divine intervention again.
Joshua was most likely born in the desert. Joshua grew up with seeing God at work.
- He ate manna from God
- He had clothes that did not fade or tear
- He saw Moses bring the tablets that contained the ten commandments down from the mountain
- He witnessed the destruction of the golden calf
- After Moses died, Joshua saw the Jordan river parted so that all of Israel crossed on dry ground
- Joshua saw the wall around Jericho fall to the ground and the city and all its inhabitants destroyed
Joshua had seen God provide time after time and God never failed.
Why would this time be any different?
This is what Joshua knows:
God told him that no one from the opposing army would stand. If the army had retreated and made it back to their camp, they would have a chance to regroup and then turn around and attack again.
Joshua prays for the sun to stand still because God had given him a work to accomplish and if night came, Joshua would fail.
God, you have given me a work to accomplish and I will fail if you do not move in a great way!